About this Research Topic
Most studies of microbial communities and processes have been explored in temperate regions, while tropical environments have seldom been investigated. It is possible that different rules apply to microbial life in these ecosystems. For instance, elevated nitrogen deposition by anthropogenic activities may exacerbate phosphorus deficiency in tropical regions, in ways uncommon in temperate ecosystems. However, it is poorly understood how phosphorus availability affects soil microbes, or how microbial processes interact with nitrogen deposition in tropical ecosystems. Moreover, the distribution of microbes not only is related to environmental factors, but also can vary in relation to temporal and spatial scale. These factors influence biodiversity patterns of larger organisms, but their role in microbial diversity remains unclear, especially in tropical systems. In addition, little is known about microbial community responses to disturbance. Land use is one of the main drivers of biodiversity alteration in plant and animal communities, especially in tropical areas, where natural ecosystems such as forests are being rapidly altered by conversion to agriculture and other uses. Understanding the effects of land use change on soil microorganisms is a major conservation frontier.
This Research Topic focuses on studies (including original research, perspectives, and minireviews) that investigate: 1) the role of microbial communities in tropical ecosystem processes and 2) the environmental and anthropological factors controlling the composition and functional diversity of microbial communities in tropical systems. Special attention will be given to studies that apply the latest molecular techniques to describe compositional and functional traits of microorganisms, and that integrate ecological and biogeochemical concepts to provide an integrative perspective on the response of microbes to global changes. The present topic is proposed to be hosted in both Frontiers in Terrestrial Microbiology and Frontiers in Aquatic Microbiology to ensure a wide range of contributions.
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.